Tag Archive: Brandi Carlile

Aug 29

Stories from my Grandfather – Skate’ne

WHAT’S PLAYING: Brandi Carlile “Hard Way Home”


Late one afternoon, some children were playing near their house when they saw an old woman approaching. The children ran away, frightened by her stooped posture and white hair, but curiosity soon drove them back.

“Do not be afraid of me, children,” the old woman said. “I am your great-great-great-grandmother. Go to the house and tell your mother that I have come.”


The children did as they were told. They spread a deerskin on the ground for the old woman, and brought her food and drink. The old woman questioned the children while she ate, asking them what time their father would return and where he slept.

The unsuspecting children told her all.

That night, after all had gone to sleep, the old woman entered the house, cut off the man’s head, and put it into a basket. Then she covered the man’s body with his blanket to be discovered by his poor wife the next morning, and quietly left the house.


Soon, she met a couple of wildcats.

“Stop, old woman,” called one of the wildcats. “Show us what you have in the basket.”

“You must not see it,” she said, “for it is very bad poison. If you look upon it, you will lose your eyes.”

“We must see what you carry, even if it costs us our eyes,” they replied, and raised the cover on the basket. When they saw the man’s head, they knew the old woman was Skate’ne, an owl monster who prowled the night, killing men and animals. They decided to kill her. One held onto her, while the other went to find a length of rope.

When he had gone, Skate’ne turned to the wildcat holding her. “I like you, and so I will do you a favor. Do you see that large club over there? Grab it and strike me down, for whoever kills me will always have good fortune.”

Anxious to kill her before his companion could, the wildcat released Skate’ne and ran to get the club. When he turned back to strike the old woman, she had already turned into an owl and flown away.



So, be wary of the dark, my children. For Skate’ne prowls the night.

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Permanent link to this article: http://www.jacquitalbot.com/2012/08/stories-from-my-grandfather-skatene/

Jul 26

Stories from my Grandfather—The Great Flood (Part 2)

WHAT’S PLAYING: Brandi CarlileRaise Hell

(Continued from Part 1)

Suddenly, a fearful crash of thunder, louder than ever heard before, shook the earth, and a glimmering light appeared far away to the north. At first, the people were glad, thinking the light heralded the return of the Sun. Then they realized it was the gleam of great waters advancing in wave after wave. The Choctaw fled before the onslaught, wailing “Oka Falamah!” —the returned waters—as the waves rushed down upon the land of the Choctaw, destroying everything in its path.




Oklatibishi heard the wailing and the roar of the returning waters from his house on the raft. Remembering the words of Achafa Chito, he rushed to the door and saw the hunters who had laughed at him trying to clamber up the side of the mountain to reach his raft, but the angry waters swept them away. Soon Oklatibishi’s raft floated upon a sea that continued to rise for many days. He wept as he saw the bodies of his people floating upon the face of the waters. After several days, even the dead disappeared beneath the waves, and the water became so deep that he could not make out the tops of the tallest trees.


As the weeks passed, Oklatibishi’s supply of corn, nuts and dried meats dwindled. He began sending one of the gray doves out each day to fly about and see if it could spot land. And at darkness each night, the dove returned to the raft.



One morning, Oklatibishi saw a huge, black bird and asked it if land was near. The bird circled several times and finally answered with a sullen croaking screech before it flew away and did not appear again. This was how Oklatibishi came to know that evil would still exist even upon the earth cleaned by the returning waters.


The next morning, he sent forth the gray dove forth and a few hours later, she returned and deposited several blades of grass into his hand, indicating that land was not far away. A strong wind arose and carried the weary warrior to the shores of a beautiful island. The island was green, well supplied with fresh water and occupied by animals enough of all types to repopulate the world and furnish Oklatibishi with meat for his cooking pot. He found a house already built for him, with a store of nuts, dried fruits, corn, and dried meat hanging inside. There was even a well-tended garden with vegetables beginning to ripen in the light of the Sun.


For several days, Oklatibishi was content, but soon he began to realize that something was missing from his life. Walking in the woodlands, he noticed that each of the animals had a mate, but he had none. How could the race of man survive if there were no mate for the last man left after the ebbing of the returned waters?



As Oklatibishi turned his steps back toward his house, he became aware of a new sound in the forest. It was the voice of a woman singing. He hastened his steps toward home, and there washing his clothing and preparing him a supper was the most beautiful young woman that Oklatibishi had ever seen. Achafa Chito had turned the white dove into a beautiful maiden to be his mate. That is why, until this day, when a man is especially pleased with his lovely wife, he will call her “His little dove” as an extra special sign of his love for her and his gratitude to Achafa Chito for allowing him to have her as a mate.


(Concluded in Part 3 next week!)



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Permanent link to this article: http://www.jacquitalbot.com/2012/07/stories-from-my-grandfather-the-great-flood-part-2/